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John Quiñones: 1952—: Broadcast Journalist

Reported For Primetime Live

Quiñones became a correspondent for ABC's weekly news program, PrimeTime Live, in 1991. During his first season, his report on the exploitation of Haitian children laboring in the cane fields of the Dominican Republic, "Bitter Harvest," earned him the Overseas Press Club's Eric and Amy Burger Award for Best Reporting from Abroad. The program also won a 1992 Emmy and first place in the international category of the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Awards in 1991.

For another Emmy award-winning documentary, Quiñones and his crew smuggled cameras into Tibet to report on the 40-year Chinese occupation. Quiñones also went undercover to investigate the meat-packing industry. The resulting exposé of the distribution of contaminated meat in the United States led to an investigation by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Quiñones investigated the cause of an epidemic of brain defects among newborns in Brownsville, Texas; reported on the problems of homeless veterans; traveled to India to investigate the poverty-driven trade in human kidneys for organ transplants; and reported from a Florida research center on the interactions between dolphins and disabled children.

Over the following years, Quiñones conducted wide-ranging investigations and interviews from all corners of the world. He used hidden cameras to investigate the safety and quality of America's seafood and a Peruvian black market that supplied babies for adoption. Quiñones went diving off the coast of Bimini to profile a marine biologist dedicated to preserving sharks and reported on the ancient, endangered Penan Indians of Sarawak, Malaysia. Quiñones' investigation of U.S. military involvement in Filipino prostitution over a 40-year period revealed the plight of some 9,000 Amerasian children who had been abandoned by their American fathers.

Quiñones continued to report on Latin American issues. He interviewed "tunnel rats," gangs of young Mexicans who rove through tunnels, beating and robbing immigrants trying to enter the United States illegally. He investigated the murder of American Michael Devine by Guatemalan soldiers, and the connections between the Guatemalan military and drug traffickers. Quiñones reported on the Latin singer Selena and her murder by the president of her fan club. A broadcast in March of 1997, in which Quiñones profiled undocumented Mexican boys being preyed upon by men in San Diego's Balboa Park, outraged many Americans. Quiñones also investigated the mis-treatment of other ethnicities as well. Police profiling of blacks became a national issue after a 1996 Prime-Time Live report, in which Quiñones and his colleagues used hidden cameras to show blacks being routinely stopped for minor traffic violations and then searched without cause. A lawsuit brought by police against ABC, Quiñones, and others involved in the broadcast was dismissed in 2002.

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Brief BiographiesBiographies: Jan Peck Biography - Personal to David Randall (1972–) Biography - PersonalJohn Quiñones: 1952—: Broadcast Journalist Biography - Came From The Barrio, Moved To Abc, Reported For Primetime Live, Became News Show Host